The Cerritos College softball team powered their way into the Southern California Super Regional, with a 9-1, six-inning win over visiting Citrus College to sweep their best-of-3 series. The Falcons (28-13) hit five home runs - three in the sixth inning - to send them to the next round, which will be a four-team double-elimination tournament next weekend to see who advances to the CCCAA State Championships.
If the top eight seeds advance, the Falcons will play at #2-seeded Mt. San Antonio College, along with #3-seeded El Camino College and #6-seeded Antelope Valley College. The Super Regional will take place next Friday through Sunday.
Not only did the win advance the #7-seeded Falcons to the next round, it was also the 500th win for head coach Kodee Murray, who is in her 16th season at the helm. Murray (pictured, left) now sports a 500-196-3 record and is just two wins away from tying the college's all-time leader, Nancy Kelly, who went 502-320-1 in her 22 seasons as the head coach.
Although the game will be remembered for the five home runs hit by the Falcons, it was the work of sophomore pitcher Kristen Voller (Norco HS) that kept a powerful Owls team in check for two days. On Saturday, Voller allowed one run (unearned) on just four hits and struck out five batters. She shut down Jade Nua, the power hitter for Citrus, and issued her a walk in the first inning, while striking her out looking in the third inning and a lazy fly out in the sixth inning. In the series, Nua, who entered with a .615 batting average, along with 16 home runs and 62 RBI, went 0-for-7 with one walk.
By contrast, Cerritos was putting up huge numbers against the Owls pitchers and got things started in the second game with a four-run third inning. After sophomore outfielder Kimberly Olivas (Warren HS) led off with a single up the middle, freshman catcher Briana Lopez (NorwalkHS) hit her first of two home runs to put the Falcons in the lead, 2-1. Sophomore shortstop Kylee Brown (Mayfair HS) followed on the next pitch with a solo home run, her 17th of the year. The inning continued with an error, which set up and RBI single by freshman second baseman Emma Wolff (Mayfair HS), her first of two on the day.
Leading 5-1 heading into the bottom of the seventh inning, Olivas got things started when her deep fly ball to left field was initially caught by Mia Escobar, but she was unable to maintain control and the ball dropped over the fence for a solo home run. And, for the second time on the day, the Falcons hit back-to-back home runs, as Lopez drilled a shot to deep center field, her 10th of the season. Brown recorded an infield single, which was followed by a game-ending two-run, opposite field home run by freshman third baseman Carly Gutierrez (Santa Fe HS).
The Falcons pounded out 13 hits, with Lopez, Olivas, Brown Gutierrez and Wolff all collected a pair of hits in the win. Eight of the nine players in the lineup had at least one hit.
Photos by Daryl Peterson
May 23, 2017 Softball: Ashley Melendez to receive scholarship
April 28, 2017 Softball: Five players named 1st Team All-SCC
April 25, 2017 Softball: Lead doesn't hold up against El Camino
April 22, 2017 Softball: Cerritos records 5-4 win over Santiago Canyon
April 20, 2017 Softball: Falcons hand EC-Compton Center 7-0 loss
April 18, 2017 Softball: Team suffers shutout loss to Cypress
April 13, 2017 Softball: Win over LB City comes from late-inning runs
April 11, 2017 Softball: Kylee Brown takes over state HR lead
April 6, 2017 Softball: Loss to El Camino snaps winning streak
April 4, 2017 Softball: Nine-run inning leads to 11-1 victory
April 1, 2017 Softball: Pair of wins aids Falcons in playoff push
March 30, 2017 Softball: Falcons respond with win over East LA
March 28, 2017 Softball: Big lead is lost in 14-13 setback
March 25, 2017 Softball: Split is highlighted by Brown's two home runs
March 23, 2017 Softball: Big numbers posted in win over LA Harbor
March 18, 2017 Softball: Cerritos scores early in 11-2 win
March 16, 2017 Softball: Offense comes alive in later innings
March 14, 2017 Softball: Long ball aids Falcons in conference win
March 11, 2017 Softball: Four-run first inning holds up in win
March 9, 2017 Softball: Shutout loss evens conference record
March 7, 2017 Softball: Falcons rebound with conference win
March 6, 2017 Softball: Early lead doesn't last long in loss
March 4, 2017 Softball: Big win and close loss for Falcons
February 28, 2017 Softball: Loss to Pasadena City first since 2007
February 25, 2017 Softball: Team splits two games
February 23, 2017 Softball: Seventh-inning heroics extends game
February 22, 2017 Softball: Third straight shutout extends winning streak
February 16, 2017 Softball: Brown powers Falcons to 7-0 win
February 15, 2017 Softball: Falcons post shutout win over Chaffey
February 14, 2017 Softball: Bases loaded walk brings home winning run
February 9, 2017 Softball: Late rally comes up short in loss to Mt. SAC
February 2, 2017 Softball: Five-run first inning leads team to win
January 27, 2017 Softball: Free passes help Falcons to win
October 21, 2016 Softball: Falcons host Canadian travel team